Kern County to look into reports of issues with rental assistance program | News – Bakersfield, California

Bakersfield, California 2021-10-17 19:00:00 –

Is considered to be a delay in distribution Rental and utility support I’m worried that unnecessary evictions will soon occur in Kern County.

Local community groups dedicated to guiding low-income residents through the application process say at least dozens of households have been waiting months for a response from the Kern County Housing Corporation. In some cases, a household is rejected due to a simple mistake, such as a failure to submit a pay slip. If the Housing Corporation processed the application quickly and notified the household of the error in Spanish letters instead of Spanish letters, the mistake could have been avoided. English.

“Some families have been rejected by simple things like contracts and pay slips. One of the things we get is that people get notified in English when submitting an application in Spanish. That’s what Hector says. Hernandez, Executive Director of Unidad Popular Benito Juarez, a local community organization focused on local and indigenous communities. “These are really important, small and important things. People are receiving letters, they don’t understand it, and they just put it aside. To that in the county. I want you to pay attention and start delivering that money to the community. “

The oversight board, which was warned on Tuesday about potential issues with the county’s major rental assistance programs, promised to take action.

Lorelei Obiat, director of planning and natural resources at Kern County, said on Tuesday, “Maybe we want too much or it’s not clear, but we move or lose this money. Would be. ” “In addition to the fact that we have people in trouble, we have people who haven’t reached it.”

The Housing Authority’s Emergency Rental and Utility Assistance Program aims to provide assistance to most individuals who have delinquent rent and housing costs due to the coronavirus pandemic. The county has received $ 106 million in federal funding to prevent the eviction of local peasants, much of which remains unused.

Tenants who earn less than 80% of their median local income ($ 55,900 for a family of four) are eligible for the program if they suffer a pandemic loss. State law provides important protection for those who participate in the program. The renter applying for assistance cannot be legally evacuated during the processing of the application, and the landlord must attempt to apply for assistance before proceeding with the eviction.

Some people may have difficulty accessing the program, but other organizations have been successful.

“Without such a program, many of the people we helped would have had no other choice but to receive that support,” said Valentin Narvaez, head of legal support at Greater Bakersfield. Stated. “I think it was a blessing for many clients.”

The Housing Authority did not respond to the request for comment.

At a meeting on Tuesday, Chief Administrative Officer Ryan Allsop said his office would hold a meeting to investigate program complaints and report them to the board of directors.

“Whether it’s two, three, or twenty, the process is clearly flawed. I think it’s worth investigating, sitting at the Housing Corporation, and understanding things,” he said. “Hopefully, before you give a presentation to your board in this program about where things are and how things are working, you’ll have time to make some adjustments to get ahead of the game. . “

You can reach Sam Morgen at 661-395-7415. You can also follow him on Twitter @ smorgenTBC.

Kern County to look into reports of issues with rental assistance program | News Source link Kern County to look into reports of issues with rental assistance program | News

Back to top button